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Shave For Results

Deidra Garcia -- For men, this daily ritual should involve more than just swiping a blade back and forth. For baby-face results, baby your face.

Let's face it, shaving is an invasive activity. Applying a sharp metal blade to your face cuts hairs but also removes microscopic layers of skin and can cause irritation.

Contrary to uninformed opinions, you shouldn't abuse your face to get a close shave. Quite the opposite. These simple rules will minimize damage and improve your shaving results.

Shave in the shower:

Shaving should be your final step before leaving the shower. The warm moisture of a shower makes hairs soft and plump and opens your pores.

Lubricate:

A performance shaving formula should form a slick lubricating cushion to allow shaving blades to glide without scraping. Leave it on your face for a minute before shaving. In our opinion, pre-shave oils are unnecessary; they are sold to supplement the inadequate lubrication of most shaving products.

Use a face scrub:

A gentle scrubbing massage will help open pores, prime follicles, and raise stubs for a closer shave. This exfoliation removes dead cells and impurities that can cause acne, ingrown hairs, and infection. It will also smooth and renew your complexion.

Use a sharp blade:

Discard shaving blades after four or five uses. Unfortunately, they don't stay sharp enough for more than that. Use gentle strokes; don't put too much pressure on the blade.

Avoid irritants:

They can damage your skin and create microscopic swelling. Avoid anything that tingles, stings, or numbs during or after shaving, when your skin is vulnerable. Stay away from alcohol or strong plant extracts such as menthol, peppermint, or citrus.

Post-trauma soothing:

Don't skip this step; it is important to calm irritation, balance your skin's moisture content, and prevent potential problems such as ingrown hairs or clogged pores. No alcohol! You need proven functional anti-inflammatory and pore-clearing ingredients.

For special occasions:

Shave in two steps. First, shave with the grain with very light pressure. Second, reapply a coat of shaving cream and shave against the grain for super-close and smooth results.

Deidra Garcia is a freelance writer and communications manager for MenScience Androceuticals, a men's skincare and grooming company. You can find more articles by Deidra, as well as further tips and advice, at www.MenScience.com.

© 2006 Deidra Garcia

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